EVE Online, a game earning a lot of attention from the console gaming crowd as of late thanks to CCP Games and Sony marketing its first-person shooter spin-off DUST 514 as an exclusive for the PS3, is now earning headlines for something entirely different.

Known for its one, massive shared persistent universe where players control everything from politics and territorial control to construction and war, CCP Games always takes the stance of letting the players control the game’s happenings, as if it were really a true, breathing galaxy with consequences. Even in-game scams that translate to thousands of real-word dollars are a go. The latest catastrophic in-game event had players attempting to make history by ruining the EVE Online economy.

Let’s talk about Jita, the most populated and busiest trade hub in the EVE Online universe. It is here where the infamous GoonSwarm alliance (consisting mostly of members from the Something Awful forums and let by The Mittani) engaged in an all-out assault, an event dubbed “Burn Jita” that’s been in the planning stages for months. Their goal? To destroy the EVE Online economy beginning April 28th (it actually began a day earlier) with the help of 14,000 suicide ships built for the sole purpose of serving in this event.

It was the GoonSwarm who successfully disbanded the biggest guild of the game (Band of Brothers) two years ago through espionage and tactics and this time, they were going into high-security space on a massive suicide mission that could have drastically changed the face of the galaxy as players knew it. What did CCP Games do in response? Nothing. Because anything goes and this is what separates EVE Online from other MMOs.

Jon Lander, senior producer of Eve Online, told Eurogamer that such an event is good for the game:

“I tell you what, it’s going to be f***ing brilliant… They’re going to do exactly what you’re able to do in the game, and people will have to roll with it. It’ll be great.”

Lead game designer Kristoffer Touborg followed up by admitting that they love what the players are doing:

“It’s what makes Eve a really good game,” he said. “Do you want to play a 15 minute match of Call of Duty that you won’t remember the next day, or do you want to spend four months manufacturing 14,000 Thrashers to do this? It’s just so big and awesome.”

In EVE Online the time-lapse and highlight reels of EVE gameplay are always 10,000x better than playing the game, check out some snippets of what went down in Jita:





Because CCP knew the event was incoming, they were able to prepare for it by altering their sever setup to allow massive player counts in that region of space. The event proved that even in high-sec space, players are not safe and it was “healthy” for certain players to be forced out into other areas during the battle.

The Burn Jita campaign began a few days ago and hundreds and hundreds of ships were lost, CONCORD (Consolidated Cooperation and Relations Command) vessels (NPC security ships) were out of control in high numbers, but Goon’s efforts didn’t exactly end up destroying the economy as planned, but that may have not been the real goal. A ton of player ships and in-game money/resources (ISK) were lost, commodity prices did change but the economic implications were not as dire as the attackers may have hoped, at least not yet. It’s another historic event for the game nonetheless and the bigger point made is that nowhere is safe.

We can’t wait to see what transpires when similar high-scale invasions and events affect and setup DUST 514 matches.

Follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes.

Sources: Eurogamer, GameSpy

Header image edited from art by foxguy2001.